God told me to _______

“God led me.”
“God directed me.”
“God told me to _____.”

Maybe you’ve said something like that before. Maybe you’ve heard someone else say it.

It’s often comes from a very sincere place: Someone (maybe even you) prays to God about something, and then has a strong feeling that they should act in a certain way.

But that doesn’t necessarily mean that God has given you a clear answer then and there.

Don’t get me wrong; it sometimes happens. But in our instant-gratification world, we can mistake strong feelings or impulses as God’s immediate answer to our question.

A missing component in a lot of people’s discernment about God’s will for their lives is the role other people play—the faith community. Yes, we should always be praying and reading the Bible. We can also leverage practices like fasting.

But God also works through the community. He works through the wisdom of our fellow-travelers.

God works through people collectively to direct people individually.

Take Paul and Barnabas, for example. A dispute began about gentiles and circumcision. (Long story.) Acts 15:2 says they “were appointed, along with some other believers, to go up to Jerusalem to see the apostles and elders about this question.”

Here you have two very influential leaders in the early church. They could have just prayed individually. But they come together collectively with the wider community to figure out God’s wisdom together.

Are you facing a tough decision? If so, you can really benefit from consulting other fellow-travelers. Make a call, send a message, schedule a time to talk and pray.

God works through people collectively to direct people individually.

By Matthew Ruttan

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